Book-A-Holic Anon

Wouldn't you rather be reading? I read a bit of anything and everything so feel free to drop me a line.

Cake - Lauren Dane - 3.5 stars

Cake - Lauren Dane

This is an extremely quick read with a very strong heroine and sexy as hell hero.

Gregori is a Russian artist with the temperament and talent to match his impressive body of work.  He's been married and since that time just enjoys women as outlets for his needs but nothing more than that.  He's intrigued by the messenger that brings him stuff from his assistant but even though he is attracted to her he isn't going to cross the line.  His penchant for withdrawing in to his work at the expense of everything else then lashing out or going off the rails when things get to be too much in his head are legendary but all of this masks a man who really does want something real and permanent.  I adored this sexy, rough man even when he was being a moron.

Wren works as a delivery person for a way to earn money while she is in school.  She has been delivering to Gregori for a while now and is fascinated by the man and his work.  She sees the real him behind the mask and wants him more than she has ever wanted anything before.  When she sees that their flirting is starting to heat up she decides to go for the man she wants.  What she runs into is a man who wants her, craves her but insists on pushing her away for her own good.  I loved how she was willing to put everything on the line for something she knew was real and worth fighting for. She's amazingly strong and assured for a person her age which I found refreshing. 

This is a quick read but the pair definitely heats up the pages with amazing chemistry and great personalities.  Thanks to and Harlequin for giving me the chance to read this in exchange for my honest review.


Everything You Need to Know

Everything You Need to Know - HelenKay Dimon 3.5


Fearless - Tawny Weber 3.5
Cake - Lauren Dane 3.5

Naked Sushi

Naked Sushi - Jina Bacarr 2.5

Naked Sushi

Naked Sushi - Jina Bacarr 2.5
Forbidden Obsessions (Bondage & Breakfast #4) - Jodie Griffin I have to say I have enjoyed every book in this series and like most people have been waiting on Gabe's story. He's been a wonderful presence in all the other stories so you can't help but want him to find his own lady love.Liv decides to take an offer of a place to stay and rest/recuperate from a friend of a friend. She knows the place was a sort of BDSM getaway for those in the lifestyle who wanted somewhere they could play in safety and learn from a man with a great reputation for teaching/nurturing healthy relationships in the lifestyle. She's still coming to terms with her accident and trying to figure out where she goes from here but also is terrified because she is dealing with some lingering issues that could cause everything she ever worked for to be permanently wiped away. I liked her strength and the fact that she never made things easy for Gabe but instead stood up for herself as she wanted to be treated as if she never had the accident. This does lead to some stupidity on her part of pushing her body harder than it needed to be and not asking for help from a man she's drawn to in spite of her inner reservations. She's smart, strong and a perfect match for a man who needs someone that submits to him but also is a true equal to him outside of the bedroom.Gabe has intrigued me from book one as we've seen this intense Dom guide our other couples to a happy place in their relationships. He's a bit disconcerted by the fire and incidents that happened in the last book which has left him wondering what exactly he wants to do with his life. He's wrongly blaming himself for the events in the last title and to see this strong man wondering if his instincts are wrong about everything around him was a bit hard at times to stomach. I loved how he wanted to push her but at the same time needed to make sure that she properly recovered from her accident. This of course leads to some major conflict between the two of them which results in a good grovel scene late in the book. Gabe is to me the prime example of what a Dom should be - caring, controlled, passionate and growly. He's always been the one with the answers and seeing him realize he doesn't have to be but can share his fears and joys with a true partner was a lot of fun.These two are perfect together and I cannot thank Jodie enough for letting me get my greedy hands on it early.
Tempted in the Tropics - Tracy March This was a cute entry in the series where we get to see the friend of the heroine in book one find love when she didn't expect it.Paige is happy running her little bakery in her hometown and getting to keep an eye on her father but she does want more than that. She wants to have a man look at her and love her like Cole loves her friend Liza but with a town full off older people and married younger ones she knows she probably won't find it any time soon. She's worked hard to help people in her town with the cooperation of the doctor but when his nephew comes in to cover for him while he is on vacation all hell breaks loose. She doesn't know his story but is pissed when he won't continue the little program she has with his uncle. As much as she is pissed at him there is a huge amount of chemistry between them and when it combusts while at Liza's wedding she ends up making herself vulnerable to a man she knows is leaving and has a lot of baggage he needs to work through. I liked her strong personality and adored how she wasn't 100% willing to let him in unless he was completely invested as well. They make a good couple when they both just be themselves.Lane is at a really bad point in his life. His partner who he also happened to be engaged to just ruined their medical practice in Austin and to add insult to injury was having an affair with her attorney. His life is in shambles so when his uncle asks him to step in and help while he's out of the country well why not? He starts things off rather badly but as you get to know him he does redeem himself. I loved his willingness to be in the moment with her although things don't always work out as they planned and when he does realize what he has with her is special he does an amazing grovel to try to win her back. This is a man who has had his world rocked to the core but is a great guy that needs someone as in the moment as she is to bring him out of his doldrums.

Stay With Me

Stay with Me - Elyssa Patrick 4.5I have to say that I enjoyed this story of a girl coming in to her adult life not knowing who to trust or what exactly she wants to do. She's lucky in that she meets an incredible man that sees the real her she doesn't even know exists. I know a lot of the child stars who had mothers like the one Hailey has turned out messed up and result in the train wrecks we see all the time on the news but in this case Hailey wants more and sees that the life she's been pushed in to is not the one she wants to lead as an adult. She's grounded but scared to death of the unknown and watching her learn to trust others and in herself was a wonderful thing to do.Hailey has been in the public eye since she was a baby due to her mother's quest for revenge on the father she never knew and then the love of the money her only child manages to pull in. Her mother doesn't care about anything other than the paycheck but I would've liked to see Hailey confront her after a horrible incident from her past is revealed by this… umm… trying to figure out how to say it nicely but … bitch of a woman. She's always been used by the people around her including any men she's chosen to spend time with who rapidly sold their stories to the tabloids. As she decides to leave Hollywood all behind her she discovers that living a normal life is harder than she planned and her history of being used leaves her skittish about letting anyone close. She meets our hero at a party where he doesn't leave the best of impressions but still manages to catch her eye and leave her wanting more than she believes she should. As she has more run-ins with him she finds herself more and more drawn to him but still keeps herself a bit aloof even though she desperately wants to let him in. It takes a lot of patience on his side and time for her to trust him but will the secret she's holding on to drive him away? Luckily the secret wasn't as huge as it could have been and his reaction to it was a reaction any sane person would have if they paid attention to the truth of it. She's an amazing person and watching her bloom with the attention from Caleb plus friendships she develops with his sister and friends made me smile.Caleb is something else. He's a man who is stubborn but sweet, infuriatingly stupid but smart as a whip, and amazingly romantic. He says and does some really stupid stuff when he first meets Hailey but at the same time it isn't anything you would be able to stay truly mad about for a long time. What he is good at though is being there for her and not wanting anything from her other than time and her. He's instantly drawn to her out on the deck but sees that she's got demons to slay that he needs to let her do but he isn't going to let her withdraw from him without a fight. I loved how loyal he is to the people around him and how much time he gives her to just be without any pressure from him to decide what she wants immediately. His gestures to her ,while simple, mean everything in the world to a woman that has been treated as a commodity all of her life. He really does see the potential she keeps locked inside and is willing to just be there for her whatever she decides. I mean wouldn't that make you melt? I can't say enough how much I loved Caleb but let's just say he's a wonderfully complete romantic hero.I cannot wait to read more about the friends in future books and hope we get more glimpses of Hailey and Caleb in those stories. Nick's book should be fun as he hopefully stands up for what we see he might want in this title. My guess is major fireworks if the pairing is who I think it is because let me tell you the repercussions could prove to be hot as hell. Thanks to and Elyssa Patrick for giving me the chance to read this in exchange for my honest review.
One Night in the Spa - Kathy Lyons 2.5

Beyond Pain (Beyond, Book Three)

Beyond Pain - Kit Rocha I'm going to feel a bit traitorous when I state this but Bren just pushed himself to the top of my O'Kane yummy men list. I know I feel guilty because Ace has been my number one man so far but Bren is just something else as we get to follow him and his wonder at finding the woman who is his perfect match.There was something amazing about watching these two extremely damaged souls find one another and help each other realize they were worth love and trust. I adored how Six became more self-aware that things didn't have to just be about power and abuse but that power could be wielded in such a way that all parties benefited. She had and still has so much to learn about life outside of being an object and I'm going to love to see more of her as the series goes on. I think that the fact she's been to hell and back will help the O'Kanes survive the changes that are coming to the Sectors and will become an asset to Dallas/Lex as they continue to fight to keep the family safe. She gets to heal in a lot of ways with a man that always seems to understand what she needs even at a time when she wasn't certain. Watching her gain confidence under his loving attention and assistance made me smile but man did I cry a bit when he was an idiot and almost cost them both everything. She's strong with major issues but with her past I could understand them and like the others I wished that we could kill Trent many more times over.Watching our resident strong silent man Bren show his soft side was amazing. He still has all these rough edges but with Six they bleed out and show how much he truly cares for the woman he sees under the scars. He does so many things to show her that she's worthy of all the good that is coming her way and provides a needed level of faith in her abilities that gives her the boost she needs to grasp at a new life with both hands. Unfortunately he doesn't see himself in the same light and almost lets his own past bring them both down. Thankfully Mad helps out at a crucial moment but I think the thing that made it work for me is Bren took a step back at a crucial moment to let Six be her own person even though as a reader it killed me.Once again Kit gives us amazing sexual tension and scenes that will make you need an ice bath but with a story that keeps you engrossed from moment to moment. Sex is in the books but the story is more than that. We have a world that is incredibly complex and seeing glimpses of what is to come keeps us on our toes. I must admit I wouldn't be upset at all if the next one magically appeared on my Kindle today... *Hint Hint*Thanks to Kit Rocha for being generous enough to give me a chance to get my greedy hands on it before it went live in hopes of a review. Note- She didn't tell me what to write or think on this review but I think knows I am a major fan of this series. :-)


Glitterland - Alexis Hall I'm going to start this review with a quick warning - Do Not go in to this book thinking you are getting a light read or easy one. This being said it was a brilliant debut well hell a brilliant book period! I'm struggling with how to sum this book up as it was a very hard read that I just couldn't put down.I'm going to start trying to put my thoughts down for you by beginning with Darian. I'm starting here because he's the heart of this book and brings his amazing personality to the page from the moment you first see him as Ash does at the club. He's brilliant in form and truly brings an infectious love of life to everyone around him that let's this unique man in. I loved how he didn't make any real apologies for who he is but owned the fact that he might not be the most respectable person for polite society but he is who he is and you just have to deal with it. He's not stupid though and even when all he wants is to be loved he's willing to step back to force Ash to give him the respect he deserves. His dialogue can be hard for those not used to hearing or reading British street lingo but I adored that touch as it kept him real in my mind and with all my adoration of BBC I'm pretty used to hearing it so reading it didn't throw me. I loved watching his willingness to put himself out there and my heart broke with his as Ash makes a horrible mistake. He's just someone I think in real life I'd love knowing even as a part of me would cringe at how horribly inappropriate he can be. I have to admit being jealous of people and characters that comfortable in their own skin as I wish I could let myself be. I get my outlet via reading and now the blog but have issues truly letting go in public (those who know me or have met me can attest to that) but watching Darian demand what he deserved was awesome!Ash is where we get to the hard parts... Alexis does a great job bringing you in to the head of a mad man. No I'm not exaggerating, Ash is certifiably a mess and has the scars to prove it. We get to see his struggle with being bi-polar and how exhausting it is for him to even pretend to function. Only as he spends time with Darian does he start to find some inner peace but he doesn't trust that as the disease tells him he's not worthy and that he will just end up destroying anything that comes near him. I mean look at what he did with Niall. He's got himself so far down the rabbit hole that even heading out to the grocery store is a major event to dread. His voice in all of this is one of a man that is struggling to want to even stay alive let alone allow someone to mean more to him than a quick anonymous shag. As he spends more time around Darian he finds himself wanting more and more but being incredibly frightened of what will happen if Darin finds the truth out about him. When the truth does come out he finds that Darian doesn't really care as life/love is never guaranteed so why not live for the moment and let the pieces fall where they may. Is this extremely optimistic? Yes but Darian has such an infectious joy of life you can't help but want to give him everything he wants just to keep him happy. Ash really is trying but when push comes to shove he makes some comments that slice to the bone and I found myself gutted as we saw Darian's reaction. I am very thankful that the author made the struggle Ash has to come to terms with what he wants/needs a hard one and even happier at the grovel that was very well done. He has to work for what we as readers all know is what he needs and I loved how the disease was not whitewashed at all but highlighted and in a way a living, breathing character in the book as well.We see books at times that whitewash mental illness and thankfully this one is not another one of those. We get to see the nitty gritty painful details and the devastation it leaves for not only the sufferer but those around them that just want to help but go about it at times in the wrong ways. Niall is a case in point on this but as much as I wanted to hate him for his behaviour I did understand it especially when it comes to a head later in the book. I would love to see more of the supporting characters especially Niall as I feel he deserves a chance to finally be happy. As I said at the start this is not an easy book to read and there are a few parts that drag as we get deeper into the psyche of Ash but I wouldn't trade those sections for anything as it makes you better understand the struggle he is having with feeling worthy of love or even of living. I have to thank and Riptide Publishing for giving me the chance to read this in exchange for my honest review. I also have to thank Sarah Frantz for being on the elevator with me at RT which started me down the path of actively seeking out more Riptide titles. I have enjoyed seeing some of the amazingly complex stories that have come out of that initial meeting. Keep them coming!

Out of Play

Out of Play - Nyrae Dawn, Jolene Perry Per my 14 year old YA reviewer:This book really brings into light the stained sides of people and how much they will strive to deny it. It does have some things to be taken into consideration if you want your children to read it, but it is a very inspiring work. When I read it I couldn’t help but feel a sense if pity and sympathy for Bishop, and nothing but respect for Penny. The book is written alternating between both their views, which can be quite interesting when certain major events come up.Bishop hates everything about being in Alaska, from the “babysitter” there with him, to the nonexistent pizza delivery service. That is, until he meets Penny, who makes him feel he no longer needs drugs to live.Penny, however, could really care less for Bishop until her own love fantasies start dissolving before her very eyes. To her, he is someone who accepts her as she is and understands what those close to her won’t. She is the tough girl hockey player that doesn’t like to lose. That is probably why one of the most interesting pieces of the story is watching her fall for Bishop.I couldn’t give the book a perfect score mostly because of the ending, which I felt at the time was a bit unfair and parts unrealistic. But I can look back and see they were predictable based on story development. Whatever my own personal qualms, this really was quite a good book that I wouldn’t put down for the second half. I think it is a great read not just for adults, but especially teens to young adults that, in particular, could have similar feelings or situations. The best advice I can give is to read it and enjoy it yourselves.
Diamond Dust - Vivian Arend Ok my fan-girl crush on Vivian Arend continues with this latest installment in the Takhini Wolves series. I mean seriously I can't wait until the RT convention in New Orleans to get a chance to see her in person again. I have to say there was a part of me to see Evan and Caroline part ways even though I knew it was coming I was happy to see her get what she truly deserved. Now when are we getting Evan??? Huh? Huh? I mean come on... LOL I also have to mention that I'm glad Lillie pushed Viv to write a book with BEARS!!! Cranky, grumbly BEARS!!!! Did I mention BEARS?? Oh sorry lost my train of thought there... When Evan scents his true mate Caroline knows things are going to change but she isn't aware yet how big the changes are. She finds out about Evan after she gets caught in an embarrassing situation and is helped out by a man who she is definitely instantly attracted to. She thinks it can't go anywhere because of her arrangement with Evan but when circumstances change she decides to roll with it and maybe have a bit of fun with this stranger. She's disappointed when the shifter in question marginalizes their attraction and claims that she is there as a political ally and this is going to be a business only arrangement. Maybe it is time for her to take the time off away from things once this week is up and re-group to figure out what path she should take now. She's so used to either doing things for someone else she loves/cares about or being used by others to improve the situation for themselves that she just wants someone or something just for her. I liked getting to see behind the facade she presents in order to survive being a full-human in the company of shifters and really appreciated how she tried to draw the lines with her grumpy bear at the beginning. She isn't being heartless but trying to protect herself from wanting to have something more than what is being presented to her. She's strong with a huge heart that has been hidden from everyone for years out of self-preservation.Tyler is intrigued by a woman who he found in the hot tub of his hotel suite. He can't afford to get distracted right now as he needs to win the bear conclave's leadership vote but something about her calls to him. When he finds out who she is and exactly how good she is at shifter politics he has to have her on his side. He also wants to engage in some healthy side activities but is positive it will just be for the week of the conclave and nothing more. He isn't looking for anything permanent but as he spends more time around Caroline he finds himself getting thoughts that he never expected. This is compounded by the fact that his bear is incredibly drawn to this feisty woman and others at the conclave have doubts about him being a good leader since he isn't attached. As we get to know him we see him struggle with what is considered acceptable in bear society as he is confronted by a woman who demands to know why bears love to claim instinct versus humanity. As he looks at bear culture from this new vantage point he is ashamed of what he sees and is willing to stand up finally to this old pattern. I loved how he struggled initially with what to do to make Caroline happy but he did truly listen to what she was saying it just didn't always sink in quickly. He has so much growth from the initial man who honestly wanted to do nothing more than look at life as a business to a man who lets himself love and live life outside of work hours. I adored his cranky attitude at the beginning and how Caroline wouldn't accept this from him.This is a pair that is truly well-matched and I cannot wait to get glimpses of them in the future but... ahem... now when do we get Evan's story again? Oh... and when can we have more BEARS!!!!!! ;-)Special thanks to Fatin who contacted me on behalf of Viv to see if I wanted an ARC of this title.. I really appreciated it and ummmmm just assume yes to anything by Viv you ever get in your hands again. I'll take em... :-)
Talking Dirty With the Player: A Talking Dirty Novel (Entangled Indulgence) - Jackie Ashenden What do you get when you have two damaged souls that have amazing chemistry? You get the story of Judith and Caleb with all the pain that goes along with opening your heart up when you really don't want to trust it to anyone at all.Judith is over Caleb. No, really she is... I mean sure they had one amazing night together when she gave him everything she was and then dealt with the fact that he basically threw it back in her face days later. Yeah there is no reason that seeing him should be difficult and you know that pesky little thing called her hormones should be immune to Mr. "Abs of Steele" cause they just should be dammit. She's needs to be in charge so badly in order to protect herself from ever being let down again that she's basically living in a shell and doesn't realize that she's missing out on anything until her brother finds his HEA. While she wants this for herself she doesn't believe that it will ever happen for her as everyone important to her leaves her. It isn't that her brother isn't there for her but he has his own issues with life and dad was always busy working so she couldn't rely on him but the one person she could rely on until that horrible night was Caleb. He's the only person she ever truly let in and look how that turned out. I liked her even when she was pushing him away out of a need for self-preservation. She's a very sensitive person behind the facade and his abandonment truly cut her to the core. When their chemistry boils over she is always waiting for the other shoe to fall and when it does she doesn't know if she can let anyone in again. I liked her strength and ability to really see him even when he shut her out. I think that is what made it more painful.. She really does know him even if he doesn't know himself.Caleb has prided himself on living his life without any attachments as his past has shown him you don't always get what you want and you just need to not let people become something you care about. He has always had a soft spot for Judith but in his gut knows he can never give her what she deserves. He has to have her talents for a charity calendar he is doing but he's shocked by how hot their chemistry still is. As he spends more time around her he struggles with what he wants to have with her and what he believes is all he can give. He makes many mistakes along the way but you do get the feeling that it is because he's trying so hard to avoid admitting what is happening every time they are together is happening. I enjoyed his need to just make her happy even when he wasn't sure exactly what he did wrong. He cares deeply even though he doesn't want to admit it and seeing him open up with her to be the real person hidden behind the playboy was at times heartbreaking. I never really disliked him even when he was being an ass but hey I have a soft spot for a hero who hides his heart because of his past. He's just a big softie. :-)Thanks to Entangled Publishing for the chance to read this in exchange for my honest review. I truly enjoyed this latest installment from Jackie and can't wait for more.
Something's Cooking - Meg Lacey This was a fun read with some pretty hilarious moments as Tess is a bit of a walking disaster.Tess knows she is living a lie as a domestic diva but she really does have her heart in the right place and everything just has spiraled out of control. She may present this cool, calm, collected individual when she does the crafts and cooking segments for morning TV but what the public doesn't know is her family is the workforce behind this orchestrated front woman. Sure she has the creative ideas and marketing brains but trust me you don't really want her to cook for you or even be near you with a glue gun unless she's had a ton of practice runs. When her agent tells her the Boston paper is sending a reporter to do a story on her upcoming TV series she panics as another Boston area reporter hiding behind the initials JR has been taking not so subtle jabs at her via his column. She is immediately attracted to the reporter who shows up and we get some fun watching her family do everything possible to hook them up. I liked how she wanted to tell him the truth but is also so driven to give the public what she loves so much she just can't see a way out of it. She's brave as well when some truths come out and she's forced to own her own part in deceiving the public and making a very public acknowledgment of her own shortcomings. I was happy to see that people really loved her and not just the facade she's presented. She's someone I would like to know in real life.Josh is also tired of living a lie hiding behind his JR pseudonym at the newspaper. Something about Tess has bothered him since he first saw a report on her so he's been digging to find out is she really as perfect as the public image portrays? When he first meets her he realizes there is something hinky going on but he is drawn to the woman he sees when she lets her guard down and finds himself wanting to share all his own secrets with her. He knows that when she finds out the truth about who he is it will ruin something that he didn't think was ever in the cards for him but misses many chances to come clean until it is too late. I adored seeing him let his walls down and realize that what he was faulting her for he was doing himself and that he didn't like what he'd let himself become. His work to get back in her life was something sweet to watch as he knows how badly he messed things up but he just needs her to listen to him. He's not trying to justify his actions but instead owns them and knows how bad they were even though some of what happened was truly beyond his control.This is a couple I think any of us would like to know in real life as they both own up to their shortcomings after a bit of prodding and have some wonderfully funny mishaps as they wind down the path to HEA. Thanks to Entangled Publishing for giving me the chance to read this in exchange for my honest review.